Closure of College Hall Pupil Referral Unit agreed

Logo saying College Hall with blue figure pointing at green stars

The decision to close College Hall Pupil Referral Unit (PRU) at the end of the current academic year was confirmed by the council’s decision-making executive on Tuesday 21 May.

The closure of the PRU comes following College Hall’s management committee advising the Department for Education (DfE) that it considered the school to be no longer financially viable. Additionally, College Hall was deemed inadequate by Ofsted during its inspection in July 2023, citing poor outcomes for children and young people.

A public consultation on the potential closure ran between 11 March and 24 April. Following the confirmation of the closure, the finances allocated to College Hall PRU will be used to enhance the overall educational provision for children in the local area. This includes a new social, emotional, mental health (SEMH) school.

Cllr Roy Bailey, executive member for children and young people, said:

The council is investing significantly in new provision that is fit for purpose, to create more local capacity for young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

“It is important to consider the closure of the PRU in the context of the wider plans to develop and improve specialist provision within the borough. When closed, the finances allocated to the PRU will be redirected to new local SEND provision.

"These facilities include a new special SEMH school for secondary pupils and 2 new secondary special resource provisions (SRPs) for pupils with autism and communication and interaction needs (CiN).”

Year 11 students will complete their education at College Hall without disruption, with personalised plans for post-16 education.

Steps will be taken to make sure there is a smooth educational transition for the remaining pupils at the PRU. This process will involve working with the young people, their parents and carers and the staff currently working with them at College Hall.

A personalised approach will be adopted to address individual needs. This will make sure there is a continuation of education and support tailored to each student’s requirements. The expectation is that these students will be accessing appropriate provision by the beginning of the new academic year.

More information can be found in the executive decision report.